American-Jewish Musician Faces Hostile Crowd in Spain and Proudly Sings in Defense of Jerusalem
I’m going to give you a bit of insight into my music preferences here; I enjoy reggae, ska and other forms of music that fit in around those genres. I started listening to one such musician a few years back and have been enjoying his music ever since. His stage name is Matisyahu, and he is an Orthodox Jew who proudly merges his faith with his music. His popularity spiked in 2010 when his most famous song One Day was used as one of the anthem for the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, Canada.
Matisyahu is again in the news, but this time he’s being recognized in a more controversial light.
The singer was recently invited then disinvited to the week-long Rototom Sunsplash festival in Spain. Rototom festival celebrates both peace and human rights and the anti-Israeli group Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) pushed the festival to drop Matisyahu from their festival. Rototom did so, but there was almost immediate backlash when the Rototom promoters learned that Matisyahu is not Israeli but American. In essence, the only reason for cutting Matisyahu from the festival would be the fact that he is Jewish.
And therein lies the truth, folks. The BDS movement is not solely about the Israel-Palestine conflict; no… at its heart, the BDS movement is a wholly racist one. They hate anything of or relating to Judaism. The BDS crowd pretends to be for peace but never utters a word when Palestinian rockets rain down upon Israeli neighborhoods. They claim to be for human rights but they support a Palestinian leadership that routinely executes homosexuals and persecutes Jews and Christians.
Once the world community applied pressure on the Rototom promoters they re-invited Matisyahu. While BDS had lost that fight they decided that they would continue to fight against all things Jewish by handing out and waving large Palestinian flags DURING Matisyahu’s performance.
Most people would have been intimidated and perhaps even angered by this, but Matisyahu used it to his advantage and performed one of his most pro-Israeli songs, Jerusalem.
He took to his facebook page in the aftermath to express his thanks for support and his love for humanity.
Tonight was difficult but special. Thank you to everyone who made it possible! Every chance to make music is a blessing.
Today music wins. Freedom of expression wins. Spain, this Saturday Aug 22nd. I have always believed in the power of music to unite all people, regardless of religion, politics or geography. This was an excruciating decision, as I felt that my core, essential being was being used as a pawn for political convenience. It is my deep conviction however that acceptance and the ability for rebirth allow us to move forward.
The incredible outpouring of worldwide support from fans and organizations who rose up as one to protest the intrusion of politics into a borderless celebration of music has been humbling. My deepest thanks to the worldwide community for rallying to the cause of musical freedom. Most of all, thank you to my incredible fans and to so many people of all faiths who refused to remain silent in the name of artistic freedom. This is your victory. – Matis
Here’s Matisyahu performing Jerusalem.
It was a brave and brilliant performance and Matisyahu should be congratulated for being willing to perform even as the racists at BDS tried to silence him. He should also be praised for not silencing his message while before a partially hostile audience. Read some of the Lyrics from Jerusalem.
Jerusalem, if I forget you,
fire not gonna come from me tongue.
Jerusalem, if I forget you,
let my right hand forget what it’s supposed to do.
In the ancient days, we will return with no delay
Picking up the bounty and the spoils on our way
We’ve been traveling from state to state
And them don’t understand what they say
3,000 years with no place to be
And they want me to give up my milk and honey
Don’t you see, it’s not about the land or the sea
Not the country but the dwelling of his majesty
Rebuild the temple and the crown of glory
Years gone by, about sixty
Burn in the oven in this century
And the gas tried to choke, but it couldn’t choke me
I will not lie down, I will not fall asleep
They come overseas, yes they’re trying to be free
Erase the demons out of our memory
Change your name and your identity
Afraid of the truth and our dark history
Why is everybody always chasing we
Cut off the roots of your family tree
Don’t you know that’s not the way to be…
We must continue to fight racism wherever we see it, especially when that racism threatens the very existence of an entire people group. The radical racists at BDS are partnering with radical Islamists around the world to extinguish the light of Judaism and Israel, and we must not allow them to do so.
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